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Prince Charming
Chinese: 黑馬王子
Andy Lau and Michelle Reis
Year: 1999
Director: Wong Jing
Cast: Andy Lau Tak-Wah, Michelle Reis, Deannie Yip Tak-Han, Nick Cheung Ka-Fai, Suki Kwan Sau-Mei, Yu Rong-Guang, Danny Wong Shu-Kei, Spencer Lam Seung-Yi
The Skinny: Great chemistry between Andy Lau and Michelle Reis highlights this typical Hong Kong comedy. An entertaining bit of pop culture fluff.
by Kozo:

Surprisingly engaging fluff from Wong Jing casts Andy Lau as Wah Dee (cue Moment of Romance theme music), a really rude fellow who’s actually a pretty nice guy. His profession is of the triad variety, but he’s a strange one: he collects no protection money and sells bootleg VCDs. Wah lives with his wacky mom (Deannie Yip), who shakes him down for money when she’s not acting wacky. Wah’s best pal Tart (Nick Cheung) and a priest (Spencer Lam) also live with Wah, forming a really strange nuclear family.

The plot (or random grouping of events that - when linked together - resemble a plot) is kicked into motion when Tart’s girlfriend Salad (Suki Kwan) is assigned to guide a visiting Shanghai heiress named Ice (Michelle Reis). Ice is visiting with her rich dad Yu Rong-Guang, but her true goal is to find her long lost mother. Somehow this leads her into Wah’s care and Ice is quite willing to slum it in HK, eating roast pork and sleeping on the floor. You see, Ice is one of those magical rich girls that only exist in totally unrealistic movies or Japanimation. Besides being amazingly beautiful (not much of a stretch for Michelle Reis), Ice is also giving, kind, curious, and totally non-judgmental. Wah is rude and uncouth, but Ice is charmed and grows to like him. 

Of course this whole set up is a total joke but to be honest it’s actually somewhat entertaining. The fun chemistry between Lau and Reis really works; Lau manages to make his smarmy persona into something appealing, and Reis is charming and sweet. Plot kicks in when dad thinks Ice has been kidnapped and Wah becomes the number one suspect. This leads to all sorts of hijinks, much of it being Mom’s attempts to get Wah together with Ice. Deannie Yip overacts like a madwoman and is both amusing and annoying. There’s action too, but not a whole lot. This isn’t a gem, but for commercial fluff it does the job. (Kozo 1999)

Availability: DVD (Hong Kong)
Region 0 NTSC
Mei Ah Entertainment
Cantonese and Mandarin Language Tracks
Dolby Digital 5.1
Removable English and Chinese Subtitles
*Also Available on Blu-ray Disc
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image courtesy of Mei Ah Laser Disc Co., Ltd.

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